Aim to realize how lucky we are compared to most people in the world

* to realize how lucky we are compared to most people in the world
* to learn to express gratitude each day instead of complaint

* Visual Aids
* Pictures of people who are less fortunate
* key words – gratitude, complaint, contented, discontented
* worksheet
* The Discontented Stonecutter
* Exercise book to make a Gratitude Journal

Lesson Outline
1. Count your Blessings
2. Expressing Gratitude
3. The Discontented Stonecutter, a Japanese folktale
4. Activity – gratitude journal
5. Conclusion
6. Prayer

1) Count your Blessings
Show the picture of a boy praying before eating. 
Why do we pray? To thank God for the food.
Today’s theme is the virtue of gratitude. Hand out the worksheet, “Count your Blessings.” It compares all the things we take for granted as normal in our own country, with many people in the world who don’t have such things. 

Look at pictures of less fortunate people.
1. food
2. home with a roof
3. TV
4. cooker
5. refrigerator,
6. clothes
7. restaurants
8. school
9. doctor & medicine,
10. phone, radio, CD player,computer
11. hot & cold water

Discuss together and answer each question.

2) Expressing Gratitude
It is important to express our gratitude and make it a daily habit. Play one of these games.

1. Thank you Game
Every day we should say thank to Heavenly Father for all of these things that we have, that others don’t have. Go around in a circle and get the children to say thank you for each. 
“Thank you Heavenly Father that I enough food to eat each day.”
etc, etc, …
What else can you say thank you for? a bicycle? toys? a warm bed? my family? friends

2. The Gratitude Game
Someone begins, “I’m grateful to God for….” And he or she shares something. Then the next person gives gratitude for something. This goes on for 5 minute. There’s no loser. Everyone is a winner.
Everyone feels happy after expressing gratitude.

3. Pictures of Gratitude
Drawing people, places and things for which people are grateful is a way to engage everyone in a fun guessing game. Divide into two teams and have each person write down a list of five nouns they appreciate: The family dog, a kid’s music teacher, family members and holidays could be a few examples. Select a person from the team to draw an item from their list. Their team must guess the correct item within an allotted time. For each correct guess, give one point. The team with the most points wins.

4. The Gratitude List Game
Choose an area or topic for your hunt: home, neighborhood, or workplace. I’d suggest starting with your home, because it is filled with things that have become so familiar, you probably don’t notice how much there is to appreciate. Have a pen and a small notebook to write in. Look around, open to all the wonders there are to appreciate and start your gratitude list.

5. The Grateful Entrepreneur Game
Start the ‘game’ by saying, “I’m so grateful that someone invented…” and fill in the blank with something relevant to what you’re doing at the time.

3) The Discontented Stonecutter
This is the story of a Japanese stonecutter, called Hofus, who is never satisfied with what he gets.
After visiting a rich man’s home he wishes he was also rich. The mountain spirit grants his wish.
After a while he isn’t happy and always wants to be something else. He becomes a prince, the sun, a cloud, a rock and finally a stonecutter again. 
The story teaches the importance of being content with what we have, rather than complaining about what we don’t have.

1. What things did Hofus want to be ?
2. Why was he never content?
3. Are you content with what you have or are you like the stonecutter?
4. Do you want more of something? games, toys, money
5. Do you sometimes complain because you can’t have what you want?
6. If you got everything you want would you be happy?
7. What can we learn from this story?

4) Activity
* Begin a gratitude journal.
Children draw a picture and write one thing they are grateful for. Each day add something new. This should be for at least 21 days. Experts say it tales 21 days to make or break a habit. It can be for something they own, something in the home, a person, things in nature,etc.. When they have finished read it through and show it to their parents.

5) Conclusion
To conclude ask each person what they could learn from today’s lesson. Refer to the lesson aims: 
* to realize how lucky we are compared to most people in the world
What things do we have that many people don’t?
* to learn to express gratitude each day instead of complaint
What can you say thank you for for today? What could you complain about? Complaining gives God a headache. Saying thank makes God smile.

6) End with a Prayer
Say a prayer of gratitude

Extra worksheet – How Grateful Are You?
How much are the children grateful for things? How much to they complain?

The worksheet looks at our daily habits and how much we show gratitude. It gets them to be more aware of how they think and behave.
eating habits
closing things
turning lights off
locking doors
repairing things
asking before taking
returning borrowed things
cleaning up
saying thank you

Discuss the worksheet together and answer each question honestly. What is their score?


fifth gradeManish Saluja